Parallax Video Development Environment

For Developing Customized Video Applications

To speed development and improve time to market for custom applications, Parallax Graphics provides an extensive suite of cross-platform programming tools. The Video Development Environment (VDE) includes an Application Programming Interface, libraries, widgets, and sample programs. To jumpstart the development process, we include source code for the Software Essentials programs. The VDE helps in-house developers, independent software vendors, and system integrators get started quickly with video and imaging.

Cross-Platform Support

Our VDE provides interoperability between environments, including support for most standard window managers (Motif, OLIT, and OpenWindows). Applications built for Sun can easily be ported to Hewlett-Packard workstations, and vice-versa. We publish our JPEG file formats so that Parallax cards can interoperate with products from other vendors.

Flexible Software Architecture

Depending on the hardware implementation, Parallax Graphics software includes window servers and/or drivers, software applications, and programming tools. Parallax enhances the Xv and Xlib (X11 libraries) video extensions to the X server to support the advanced video capabilities of its hardware. The drivers use these modified extensions to control the video and provide seamless interfaces to analog video hardware and digital video streams. For users of XVideo and PowerVideo, these extensions can take advantage of JPEG compression to efficiently capture and play back video content. XVideo users can also display digital video content on an external analog device, such as a TV monitor or VCR.

Standards Compliant Development Tools

Our Video Development Environment is CDE and Motif-compliant to support industry standard user interface design. Applications can maintain the same look and feel across all platforms. To create custom applications, Parallax provides several development tools:

Complete Applications as Sample Programs

Parallax offers developers source code for its easy-to-use applications, MovieTool and VideoTool. These applications contain the fundamental functionality most developers need -- displaying and controlling one or two live video inputs, capturing images and movies, playing back stored movies, and sending live and stored images to an analog device (using XVideo). Developers can review the fully-commented source code as programming examples, reuse code fragments, or simply compile the functionality into their own programs.

The Video Development Environment gives developers access to the many unique features of the Parallax Graphics VideoStream architecture. VideoStream optimizes workstation performance while displaying, compressing and decompressing live video through simultaneous parallel channels.

Programming Functions

Xlib video extension, Xt video widgets, and Motif functions speed development of Xt-based applications:

Xlib Video Extension provides core video functionality

  • XPlxQueryConfig
  • XPlxQueryVideo
  • XPlxSetVideoParameterString
  • XPlxVideoInputSelect
  • XPlxVideoLive
  • XPlxVideoOutputSelect
  • XPlxVideoScaleCopyArea
  • XPlxVideoScaleOutput
  • XPlxVideoSqueezeLive
  • XPlxVideoSqueezeStill
  • XPlxVideoStill
  • XPlxVideoStop
  • XPlxVideoTag
  • XPlxVideoValueLoad
  • Xt Widget: VideoIn displays live or still video in an X window

  • XtnblankIntervalHeight
  • XtNbrightness
  • XtNchannel
  • XtNcontrast
  • XtNcropped
  • XtNdiagnostics
  • XtNdisplayrect
  • XtNhardwareType
  • XtNhue
  • XtNinterlaced
  • XtNlive
  • XtNnewFrame
  • XtNnormalAspectRatio
  • Xt Widget: VideoOut exports digital video data to the output channel of an XVideo card

  • XtNchannel
  • XtNdestRect
  • XtNdiagnostics
  • XtNhardwareType
  • XtNnormalAspectRatio
  • XtNsignalFormat
  • Xt Widget: JPEG stores the contents of an X window in a JPEG-compressed image file, decompresses and displays a JPEG-compressed file, or translates JPEG-compressed images.

  • XtNcompressDestRect
  • XtNcompressSourceRect
  • XtNdestWin
  • XtNdiagnostics
  • XtNdisplayDestRect
  • XtNdisplaySourceRect
  • XtNgetNewImage
  • XtNjfifInputFile
  • Motif Functions provide cascading menus for users te select a specific video input and for XVideo users, video output

  • PlxCreateInputCascade
  • PlxCreateOutputCascade
  • Interoperability

    Applications built with the VDE are interoperable across platforms supported by Parallax Graphics video cards, including Sun and Hewlett-Packard workstations.


    Parallax Graphics provides free technical support to help you implement your video applications.

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    Copyright 1997 Parallax Graphics, Inc. All rights reserved.